Dassault Rafale Wins USD 10.4 Billion Indian Air Force MRCA Fighter Jet Deal: Sources

The Dassault Rafale fighter jet,
manufactured by the French company Dassault Aviation, has won India’s
mammoth contract worth $10.4 billion, say sources. The Indian Air Force 
plans to buy 126 aircraft over the next ten years.

The process
to determine the L1 (lowest bidder) has been completed, and sources
indicate that the final contract is expected to be signed in  the next
financial year. The first 18 aircraft will be bought off the shelf. The
rest 118 will be manufactured in partnership with an Indian company.

There
were six contenders for the world’s biggest defence deal which included
the Russian MiG- 35,Lockheed Martin’s F-16 Falcon, Boeing’s F-18
Hornet, the Swedish Saab Grippen, Euro-Fighter Typhoon and Rafale.

Of
these, the European EADS Eurofighter Typhoon and Dassault Rafale were
in the final race for the global tender for a medium multi-role combat
aircraft (MMRCA). The Eurofighter bid was backed by four partner nations
including Germany, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom while the
Dassault Rafale was backed by the French Government.

On November 4
last year, Defence ministry had opened the commercial bid of the two
firms left in the race and since then has been busy in determining the
lowest bidder. The rest were rejected as they didn’t meet the technical
qualifications.

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